The perfect semester abroad! December 15, 2020

By (English Language and Literature, Wright State University) - abroad from 08/26/2019 to 12/13/2019 with

AIFS London - Richmond, The American International University in London

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I became more confident in myself as a woman and I feel confident traveling alone now. I also realized how passionate I am about a career in social media and marketing.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? None

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

For someone who grew up in the country and graduated with 50 students in high school, London was the perfect city to expand my worldview and travel abroad for the first time!

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

On site staff was incredibly supportive every step of the way! I wish they did more programming to check in with students throughout the semester, but they were always willing to help us with issues or great people to chat with for food recommendations and more!

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

I lived in a dorm on the very top floor of my building. It had easy access to all facilities including laundry, library, cafeteria, and showers, but it was not accessible to American standards. I had to walk over 100 stairs everyday to get to my room, and I wish there was more improvements to make the building accessible.

* Food:

The food was offered five days a week with our meal plan. The food wasn’t spectacular but I loved the variety they served, and the food staff were always so nice and actually made an effort to connect with me!

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

I felt very safe almost always during my program. As a woman, I am always concerned about my safety, but AIFS had security staffed at the front of every building and required ID access to all buildings and classrooms. There was only one terrorist attack on London Bridge while I was abroad, and AIFS staff required all of us to check in immediately after it happened. They took quick action to make sure we were all safe.

If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? Yes

I really like AIFS all inclusive program cost and I feel they really invest in the cultural experiences that students should have while they’re taking classes.

Finances

* Money: How easily were you able to live on a student's budget?

(1 = not very easy/$200+ on food & personal expenses/week, 2.5 = $100/week, 5 = very easily/minimal cost)

London may seem like a very expensive city to live in, and while it is, there are very easy ways to navigate expenses to drive the cost down. My recommendations: Sainsbury’s or Tesco for food, Primark for clothing, and Boots for hygiene products.

Language

* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
  • International Students
About how many local friends did you make that you will likely keep in touch with?

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Cultural immersion & activities
  • Dorm living available
  • Housing and meals included in cost
* What could be improved?
  • Diversity & inclusion resources
  • Housing accessibility
  • Programming throughout the year to check in with students
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I would have spent more time exploring new areas of London instead of traveling on the weekends to new countries! No matter how much time you spend in London, you’ll never get to see everything, so make the most of the time you do spend there!

Reasons For Studying Abroad

To help future students find programs attended by like-minded individuals, please choose the profile that most closely represents you.
The Academic or Linguist
You went abroad with specific academic goals in mind; the program credentials and rigor of your coursework abroad were very important to you. You had a great time abroad, but never lost sight of your studies and (if applicable) were diligent with your foreign language study. Good for you!